John Keats

(31 October 1795 – 23 February 1821 / London, England)

Ode To Autumn


Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the mossed cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimmed their clammy cell.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reaped furrow sound asleep,
Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers;
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,---
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir, the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft,
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

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  • Arnav Gogoi (6/6/2013 1:33:00 AM)

    i love this piece. It lucidly and wittily describes how beauty lies in every thing. The season which we generally consider to be wed to stillness and dryness, Keat's has portrayed it in a completely different way. I specially love the mood of the poem which starts from the first stanza being one of fruitfulness, fertility and life to the third being full of the unheeded music of nature. The personification of autumn is remarkable. There is movement even in stillness! ! ! That's a piece only a master can create.... (Report) Reply

  • Srimayee Ganguly (1/3/2013 11:33:00 AM)

    Linda May Fox,
    Keats is my favorite too. I love his poems La Belle Dame... and On first looking into Chapman's Homer. (Report) Reply

  • Linda May Fox (6/22/2012 1:20:00 PM)

    Keats is my favourite poet and I think his work is amazing! Ode to Autumn is one of his best, i feel. His description of autumn is great. Very awe inspiring! (Report) Reply

  • Amatulla Mohammadi (3/22/2012 11:58:00 AM)

    this is one of the amazing poems keats wrote...it is said that he wrote this poem as an extempore...amazing :) love the way he describes autumn :) (Report) Reply

  • Paul Butters (1/9/2007 7:22:00 AM)

    Keats is at least one of my favourites. Get the prayer mat out! This is one of his best. NB the subtle distancing effect throughout the poem using ALL the senses! Sublime. (Report) Reply

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